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More Than 400,000 Hoosiers Lose Significant Income As $600 Unemployment Benefit Ends

Justin Hicks
IPB News

More than 400,000 Hoosiers would lose, on average, about 46 percent of their unemployment benefits under the proposed federal HEALS Act – that’s according to a recent analysis by The Century Foundation, a progressive think tank.

The HEALS Act would supplement unemployment benefits with an additional $200 per week until October. That would replace a $600 boost to benefits that ended in Indiana more than a week ago. In the meantime, Hoosiers began receiving benefits Monday that represent a little less than half of their weekly earnings.

Jessica Fraser, director of the Indiana Institute for Working Families, said the extra $600 benefit was keeping an imminent housing and food crisis at bay.

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Without a replacement in sight, she said the state could help by including more rental assistance in its eviction moratorium policy.

“You know it’s protecting people from homelessness right now, but it is an imperfect solution,” she said. “People are getting behind on rent, there’s not enough money coming in to help with these arrearages, much less moving forward.”

Political leaders in Washington are expected to continue negotiations on unemployment assistance this week.

Contact reporter Justin at jhicks@wvpe.org or follow him on Twitter at @Hicks_JustinM.